In a stunning development, the Massachusetts legislature today passed a bill requiring its citizens to eat broccoli at least once a week. The governor has said he will sign the bill into law.
"Justice Scalia gave us the idea," said Senate President Therese Murray before continuing:
"We realized that if the federal government did something like this it would be a terrible imposition on liberty and a one more example of the overbearing tyranny of the federal government. Since allowing the mandate in Obamacare would imply such a power, the ACA cannot be allowed to stand. But Massachusetts has had such a mandate for four years and no serious person has questioned our state's power to impose it. The standing of Justice Scalia and the intellectual power of his questioning helped us realize that requiring the eating of broccoli is and always has been well within our powers as well, and since it will improve the health of our citizens and consequently reduce health care costs, why wouldn't we do it?"
The bill incorporates exemptions for children under three in response to the complaints of parents who claimed they have been unsuccessful in attempts to prevent their children from spitting out or throwing the vegetable. In addition, adult citizens may get exemptions upon obtaining a doctor's certification that broccoli makes them gag.
Critics have complained that enforcement of the law will be a special problem, and police chiefs have requested additional resources, asserting that their existing resources are fully engaged by more critical enforcement problems. An amendment to establish a special Broccoli Court was rejected on the grounds that the U.S. Supreme Court had already established rights to that name.
Murray says she has received inquiries from groups in several states who recognize the usefulness similar laws would have in their own states. Questions have come from the Pecan Growers Association of Georgia, cheese interests in Wisconsin, and Napa Valley farmers in California.
*Authoritative sources assert that Ms. Murray would credibly deny passing such a bill or making such remarks.